Wednesday, Congressman Mike Rogers told CNN’s Chris Cuomo that while the U.S. has made great strides in dealing with international terrorism threats, the growing threat of domestic terrorism is disturbing.
Wednesday was the 18th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Rogers spoke with Cuomo following Tuesday’s hearing on current threats to the homeland.
“I feel proud we’ve made great strides,” Rogers said. “We have a great intelligence apparatus. … We’ve done a great job of training and equipping our first responders. It’s been demonstrated repeatedly. We’ve got a very dangerous world out there, not just domestically but internationally, with more threats than we had 18 years ago, so that’s pretty sobering.”
“While we have to keep our eye on these foreign threats, the growing threat [of domestic terrorism] here at home is disturbing,” Rogers added. “These [groups] are starting to use recruitment techniques that foreign terrorists used to use internationally, now these people are using to radicalize here in this country. We had a report from the FBI in may that they currently have over 1,000 cases open on people on our soil that are terrorists — [people] that may be radicalized by foreign terrorist organizations or from right-wing or left-wing groups here in the country.”
Rogers has been on the [Homeland Security] Committee since it was established, when it was still a select committee.
“We generally aren’t very partisan,” Rogers said. “In yesterday’s hearing, there was no partisanship. We took…a very sober approach and at the end of the hearing both the chairman and I made the comment this was one of the best hearings we ever had.”
“This morning, we also give thanks to the dedicated men and women at the Department of Homeland Security,” said President Donald Trump said at a remembrance ceremony at the Pentagon. “Their Department was created after 9/11 to help secure our immigration system and ensure that those who threaten our people are denied entry to our shores. We’re indebted to every law enforcement official — state, local, and federal — who devotes their life to keeping America safe.”
Rogers is the ranking member of the House Homeland Security Committee. He was elected to the House for the first time in 2002 and is serving in his ninth term after previously serving in the state legislature and on the Calhoun Commission.
(Original reporting by CNN’s Chris Cuomo contributed to this report.)